Treasured Gifts for the Holidays Adopt-A-Manatee®

Bruce and Madison Johnson.
Mary (left) says she went through the list of manatee adoptees with her daughter's twin sister who saw the name Margarito and knew Annabella (right) would love him. "And she does," says Mary. (Photo courtesy of Mary Flanagan.)

For further information, contact:
Janice Nearing, Director of Public Relations
Save the Manatee Club
Phone: (407) 539-0990
E-mail: jnearing@savethemanatee.org

For Immediate Release

Note:
A high resolution jpeg (300 dpi) of a manatee image, as well as a photo of Mary and Annabella, are available upon request.

Make a big impact on the people you shop for this holiday season with thoughtful gift adoptions from Save the Manatee Club. These are real, living Florida manatees with known histories that can be adopted online at savethemanatee.org, or by calling the Club toll free and talking to a friendly representative at 1-800-432-5646. Funds from the Club's adoption programs go toward vital manatee conservation and aquatic ecosystem protection programs.

"I decided to adopt a manatee for my daughter after she put 'life-sized manatee' on her Christmas list last year," said Mary Flanagan from Austin, Texas, who adopted Margarito the manatee for her teenage daughter, Annabella. "I thought it would be great to 'give' Annabella a manatee while at the same time donate to a group that works to protect these large and lovable animals."

Annabella says she was surprised and ecstatic to receive the manatee gift adoption for Christmas. "It's exciting to have a personal connection to one of these animals I admire so much."

Manatees available for adoption such as Squeaky, Rocket, Merlin, Ariel, and many others can be viewed on the Club's website at savethemanatee.org/adoptees. An annual manatee adoption costs $25, is tax-deductible, and includes an adoption certificate with a full-color photo, a biography, a membership handbook, and subscriptions to the Club's newsletters which feature updated reports on the manatees in the adoption program and information on important issues affecting manatees around the world. Shipping is free for U.S. adoption orders. Gift adoptions are sent with a personalized holiday message. And, each new member who joins the Adopt-A-Manatee program at $35 will also receive the Club's popular 2014 manatee wall calendar.

"Manatees delight people of all ages," said Patrick Rose, aquatic biologist and Executive Director of Save the Manatee Club. "Big and adorable, manatees charm Floridians and all those who vacation in Florida and have an opportunity to see them. Sadly, it has been a catastrophic year for the endangered manatee population due to a prolonged and deadly red tide event in southwest Florida and an ongoing mortality event in the Indian River Lagoon on the Atlantic Coast." There were 803 manatee deaths from all causes as of December 13, 2013, which is higher than any previous year's total mortality, with the exception of the cold stress mortality event in 2010. Rose said at the current rate, the mortality for 2013 will likely break all previous yearly mortality records since record-keeping began.

"Those who adopt manatees as gifts this holiday season will help us fund emergency rescue response for sick and injured manatees, critically-needed research, public awareness and education, and much more," explained Rose. "We greatly appreciate the heartfelt support of our manatee conservation efforts."

Save the Manatee Club, an international nonprofit conservation and manatee welfare organization, was created by singer/songwriter Jimmy Buffett in 1981. Its mission is to protect endangered manatees and their aquatic habitat for future generations.

Manatee gift adoptions are available by contacting Save the Manatee Club at 500 N. Maitland Ave., Maitland, FL 32751, or by calling 1-800-432-JOIN (5646), or by visiting our Adopt-A-Manatee page at the web site. Also, discover special manatee items, from earrings to books, in the Club's gift catalog at www.shopsavethemanatee.org.

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